Company headquarters and Public Affairs satellite offices are one family, and at the same time two very different worlds – and therefore source of a lot of frustration in Brussels and the home base. Headquarters are driven by business results, the stock exchange, sectoral developments, advisory meetings – Brussels satellite offices deal with political friends and foes, rumours, proposals and parliamentary amendments. Public Affairs staff often has different educational backgrounds than core business staff, and they train different skills in the political environment than those working directly on earning the revenues. What to do? The recipe is not so difficult, yet necessitates awareness in the headquarters: you are all in for a long-distance relationship, and you need to make an effort to make it work. Public Affairs staff needs to be included in important company meetings and corporate parties; they need to be involved with the Headquarter on a very regular basis. Companies need to make sure they don’t go native but learn and live the company’s goals and values. And Public Affairs professionals need to learn their Headquarter’s language – develop an interest in the business operations and greater context of managing a company.
That also helps to get into different career paths if desired. If you haven’t done so already, but you are starting to think about changing your Public Affairs career, here’s a workshop for you! 30 June 2016, 12.30-14.30 – in Brussels: